The Top Ten Online Retailers

As most people will agree, a satisfied customer is almost always a loyal customer. If you don’t give your customers a great experience, they won’t want to come back. It’s really that simple. So where are the happiest, most satisfied customers shopping?

Every year, ForeSee conducts the Top 100 Satisfaction Index, an analysis of customer satisfaction with the top 100 retailers in the United States, according to the 2011 Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide. This data, the result of almost 21,000 responses from visitors of the top 100 retail sites, allows for year-over-year comparisons of both industry average satisfaction and satisfaction with individual retailers.

ForeSee said that a satisfaction score of 80 on the index has been viewed in the past as the “Holy Grail” of customer satisfaction, with just four companies surpassing the milestone in 2005. This year, 37 companies topped the 80 mark. Here’s a look at the top 10.

Amazing Amazon

Amazon continues to set and raise the standard for e-retailers. After grabbing the top spot from Netflix last year, Amazon remains the leader of the pack with an impressive score of 89. But not only has it maintained its lead, it increased its score by three points from last year, breaking the record for the highest score ever achieved and leaving it in a class by itself. Amazon is now THE benchmark to beat.

And anyone who has shopped on the site recently can see why: the huge selection of items, the easy checkout process and speedy delivery makes shopping on Amazon both an easy and pleasurable shopping experience.

A key element of Amazon’s success in customer satisfaction is to offer streamlined online payments that don’t require shoppers to fill in multiple pages of account information. Click here for more ways on how to improve the sign-up process.

Clicks and Mortar

Retailers with a strong brick-and-mortar base are coming to terms with just how important a strong web-shopping experience is for their businesses.

Several huge traditional retailers, such as Home Depot, Kohl’s, Costco, and Macy’s, have vastly improved their ForeSee ratings since the index was first put together. Among the most improved brands was clothing brand Urban Outfitters (up eight points to 75).

The recent updates to the site have successfully created an image that perfectly reflects the alternative vibe echoed throughout their stores. More importantly, shopping on their site is a pleasure not a chore; navigation is clear and crisp and the products are photographed well.

Stay Tuned for More…

And it’s the small changes to a website that can make all the difference. According to ForeSee, if a company makes changes to increase its rating by one percentage point, it can lead to as much as a 14% boost in revenue from transactions on the website.

The report proves a strong relationship between customer satisfaction and a company’s bottom line. With the prevalence of smartphones and social networking sites making the consumer voice much louder than in previous years, customer satisfaction has never been so important.

Over the next few months we’ll be looking at some of these websites in more detail and discussing what these brands are doing that have their customers coming back for more.